Your brand isn’t your logo, though many people wrongly think they’re interchangeable. What does it mean to change your logo? Over the next few days, three stories about three organisations that think they know.
You can imagine the scene. An executive has a problem. Her company is seen by the outside world to have lost its branding edge. She calls in the experts. The experts note that the company’s clothing labels use a particular typeface, while the logo itself is primarily defined by its blue square and a different typeface. What better way to show a renewed mojo than to take the modernity of the clothing label and at the same time show continuity with the blue square by using the new face and the blue square in a new and dynamic relationship?
Or try this.
You can imagine the scene. An executive has a problem. His company is seen by the outside world to have lost its branding edge. But he reckons the company’s still got it. Really, it’s as much loved by its target audience as…Coke!
Hey! Let’s do a deliberate New Coke! Change the logo and then change it back by popular demand. Everyone will remember why they loved us and buy our stuff. And, unlike Coke, we won’t have to go through the expense of actually producing new products. Ker-ching!
Both are equally plausible scenarios. But the fact is, only a few people really know why Gap changed their logo, and they’re not telling (yet). The cack-handed attempts at crowdsourcing a logo seemed more of a panicked reaction than part of a planned engagement strategy. But we just don’t know whether they’ve done it as part of a clever strategy, or a stupid one. Neither Facebook nor the comment sites are really known for balanced, nuanced reactions, but so far everyone thinks they’ve been stupid.